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Written Answer by Mr Lim Swee Say, Minister for Manpower, to Parliamentary Question on HR Needs of Local Funeral Industry

Notice Paper No. 243 Of 2015 For The Sitting On 17 August 2015 Question No. 312 For Written Answer

MP: Ms Kuik Shiao-Yin

To ask the Minister for Manpower (a) what is the number of full time, part-time and casual labour employed in the local funeral industry from 2010 to 2014; (b) what is the Ministry's projected human resource needs of the funeral industry for the coming decade; and (c) how is the Ministry working with the Ministry of Education to set up mortuary science or funeral directing courses to ensure that human resource needs of Singapore's funeral industry for the next decade are being met.


  1. The local funeral industry employs fewer than 1,000 employees, which is less than 0.1% of the total workforce. Employment for the sector has grown steadily at about 6% per annum in recent years. 
  2. Despite the small employment numbers, the industry provides essential services for our society. While we face an ageing population, life expectancies have also increased. We expect to have a sufficient pipeline of manpower to meet the demand for funeral services given the current employment growth rates. 
  3. The funeral services industry is one where employers have provided on-the-job training. We encourage the industry to step up, and take the initiative to work with their employees to identify and develop the skillsets that are needed. Government will provide the necessary support and would be happy to work with the industry association to help support their training efforts.